Thursday, September 24, 2009

#45 - THE NINE

Shana Tova - Happy New Year to all my followers and readers!

One year ago on Rosh Hashana, little did I know that a few weeks later, I would begin a Gematriot blogspot. It is a bit ironic for me to say this; because for several years, I had dreamed of having a Gematriot website, and I knew about the concept of blogging for the last few years. However, it was at a split moment's notice as a flash in my mind shortly after the conclusion of Simchat Torah that I decided to combine these two concepts with the immediate thoughts I had in mind starting with the title "Gematriot start IN THE BEGINNING with Simchat Torah".


Speaking of which, the source in the Chumash that hints to the concept of Gematriot in Torah is found in this very week's Parshat Ha'azinu. As Rabbi Yehuda HaChosid mentions in Sefer Gematriot, that the words Ki Lo Davar Reik Hu Mikem "For it is not an empty thing for you" (Deutronomy 32:47) are the Gematria of the word Gematriot (679). The original context is referring to the words of Torah, and as Rashi comments, there is nothing empty in the Torah that you don't have reward for interpreting it. While I will not get into the whole thing that Rashi is discussing, the point I want to make here is that perhaps on a deeper level, the question that can be asked is why does the Torah have to say that there is nothing empty here? While we may not always understand why something is written in the Torah, but wouldn't we still think that if it is something written in the Torah, then there is a reason for it, no less than we see a work of Creation, even if we don't understand Hashem's reason for creating it?

The ultimate purpose of something that we learn from the Torah is not just some nice Gematriot that add up to prove a point, but that that point should teach us an instruction in our G-d given lives, as indeed that very verse continues "for it is your life, and it is through this thing that you will lengthen your years". Indeed, the very word Torah comes from the word Ho'ra'ah/Instruction, as the Torah is our instruction manual throughout life, which can increase our physical life which will of course grant us additional time to serve Hashem, but most importantly, our spiritual life which is eternal if we take advantage of the time of the physical life that Hashem gave us for this purpose.

This, my friends, is my ultimate motivation for me to continue with my Gematriot blogspot, even if I don't see comments all that often, but I know from other sources on the net that people have liked what I wrote and hopefully will serve as some positive motivation in their lives. After all, this is time consuming, and as one of the workshop instructors mentioned in last week's Jewish Bloggers Convention in Jerusalem, virtually no one makes money from blogging. So, at least in my case, it is ultimately the motivation of helping others want to learn Torah, do more Mitzvot, improve morally or ethically, that is the pay at the end of the day, besides the spiritual rewards for writing words of Torah, and spiritually and emotionally helping other Jews.

YEAR 5770 - "The Nine"

With this being said, I am now on my first post for the year 5770. The Hebrew letters for this year are Hei, Tav, Shin, Ayin. Now, if you were to read this number in Hebrew as a word, it can be read as HaTeisha - THE NINE. Another way of reading this number is placing the Hei from the front to the back of the number which can then be read as Tisha, which is another word for NINE, depending on how the word nine in Hebrew is used grammatically.

Speaking of which, the word Tisha is mentioned only four times in the entire Chumash. The first time in reference to Yom Kippur, where it says that one begins fasting on the "9th of the month" of Tishrei towards evening, hinting to two things - that there is a special Mitzva to eat extra on the day before Yom Kippur - 9 Tishrei, and that we are supposed to set some part of the end of the 9th of Tishrei as the beginning of our fast (though technically, one does not receive the stringent punishment for eating unless it is already the 10th of Tishrei). The next two mentions
of this word is in reference to the numbers of the males from 20 years and up of the tribe of Shimon shortly after the dedication of the Tabernacle as part of its 59,300 such members (interestingly, the month of Av corresponds to the Tribe of Shimon and the letter Teit=9!), and the last such mention is regarding the 5th day of Sukkot when particularly NINE special bulls were sacrificed in the Temple (interestingly, Aharon is the special heavenly guest for the 5th day of Sukkot who passed away on Rosh Chodesh Av, the month which corresponds to the letter Teit=9!).

Now, I attempted to do a little math here. What happens when you divide 9 into 5770? As it turns out, it doesn't exactly divide evenly - the result is 641 with a remainder of 1/9. It seems that the number of the previous year 5769, in fact ending with a 9, AND divides 9 evenly.
Hence, the number 5770 seems to have Chutzpa, so to speak, to declare immediately after the number 5769 that "No, I am THE NINE!" (Don't forget that in fact, ALL languages ultimately are descended from Hebrew). But as we know, it is HASHEM who created everything, and in fact the letters of the Alef Beit are the makeup of the Torah, and nothing is mere "coincidence". Could there be a message here for us?

As we go on here, we will be addressing this question, but first, I would like to point out that it is my 45th post that is called THE NINE. There are in fact two immediate connections here between these two numbers. Well first of all, 45 is evenly divided by 9 which results with the number 5. In fact, when reading the number of this Hebrew year as HaTeisha, the letter Hei is 5 and Teisha means 9, so 5 times 9 is 45. But also, adding the numbers 1 through 9 equals 45.


So, as this is my first post of the Jewish year, Adam is the first of mankind. And indeed, his Hebrew name consisting of the letters Alef, Dalet, Mem is the Gematria of 45. Additionally, the one time in the Chumash that his name is mentioned outside of Parshat Bereishit where his story is mentioned is in Parshat V'Etchanan (Deutronomy 4:32) - "From the day when G-d created Adam on the earth" - the 45th Parsha of the Torah. And if this would not be enough, his wife's name Chava (Eve) consisting of the letters Cheit, Vav, Hei is the Gematria of 19, the number consisting of the first and last of the first NINE numbers which add up to 45! Indeed, it was Adam himself who was chosen by Hashem to do the naming of all the creatures, as he also named himself and his wife. And as we know, Adam and Eve were created on Rosh Hashana.

I am very surprised how especially in the observant (Orthodox) Jewish population, the name Adam is hardly ever used, but the name Chava is given to thousands of girls. It is true that there are many more biblical male names than female names, but the reason this strange phenomenon bothers me is because when my sister was brainstorming on what name to give her newborn son several years ago, she was told by someone from the very religious Jewish community where she was living that the name Adam was not a good choice because Adam was not Jewish, as we gave only names of Jews to our Jewish children. But hold it a second! Why is the name Chava any different, unless Chava/Eve became Jewish?! And to think of it, the name Yitro/Jethro, the father-in-law of Moses who converted to Judaism whose name is the name of the Parsha of the giving of the Torah & Ten Commandments is never used (the only case I know of is of a Jewish convert who has this name!) while the names of Jewish female converts Ruth and Batya (the latter who was the princess of Pharaoh who enslaved the Jews) are given freely to Jewish women. I believe that there was a time that females - and until this day - in the mainstream Jewish community at one point - were treated as second class citizens and so were given names regardless of origin, unlike males who had to be given only names of Jewish born Biblical figures! (unless it was a name in Yiddish). I also know that in European Jewish families, including in my grandparents' family, the males were given normal sounding Hebrew names, while the females were thrown with some made up sounding Yiddish words as names which in fact have no real translation, and many Jews today wonder why these names were even given!

I would like to mention that in fact there was a kabbalistic saint of a few hundred years who
bore the name Adam known as Adam Ba'al Shem who bequeathed his writings to the Ba'al Shem Tov. So, I guess it isn't such a no-no to give the name of the ancestor of all mankind to our children after all!

And while Adam HaRishon/Adam "the first" messed up with eating the first non-kosher food (if Hashem forbids eating it, it is non-kosher food) of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge (though fruit from the tree is always kosher today minus the rodents crawling in or out of it) he still was a Tzadik/saint, who in fact repented of his sin. In any case, we see that his punishment was based on having to work hard for a living; and in his particular case, to work the ground that originally was supposed to bring forth the produce for him with no effort of working the earth on his part, and for Eve/women - pregnancy and labor pains.


While on the subject of work, I should mention that today - 7 Tishrei - is the birthday of Zevulun, one of the sons of Jacob. As I mentioned before, he was the one who supported his brother Yissaschar who learned Torah all day. This means that in order to support his brother, he had to work for a living. And don't forget, when one supports another to learn Torah, it typically means that he is supporting two families, because that is how the one learning Torah all day can do that without having to work for his own family. This also means that this Zevulun has an equal share of the reward of the Torah learning of the Yissaschar; that is, each one gets 50% of that reward, and this reward is ETERNAL.

Now, here is an interesting observation. Zevulun's name begins with the letter Zayin, which equals seven, and he was born on the 7th day of the 7th month of the Jewish months that we count from Nissan (though the Hebrew year, as opposed to counting MONTHS, starts from Tishrei). Moreover, the month of Sivan, the month of the giving of the Torah which was on the 7th day of that month which fell out on Shabbat - the 7th day of the week (as it did this past year), corresponds to the Tribe of Zevulun, and the letter Zayin. Yet, isn't it ironic that the number seven, which represents Shabbat, the day of rest, should be the number most representing Zevulun when in fact, his whole mission is working, though it is for a most noble purpose, besides supporting his own family, to support Torah learning?

In life, we basically live in one of two mindsets. We either live to eat or eat to live. We either live to work or work to live. Now in Judaism, with the concept of Shabbat, we understand that the ultimate purpose of our life is the spiritual aspect of it. "Those who prepare food on Erev Shabbat (before Shabbat) will have what to eat on Shabbat" our Rabbis inform us. This statement actually has a dual meaning. Well first in it literal meaning, which actually refers to two things - preparing food before Shabbat so we will have the food ready for Shabbat as we can't do certain types of work in relationship to preparing the food on Shabbat or buy the food on Shabbat, and also we have to work during the week so we will have what to buy for Shabbat. And in a more esoteric meaning, if we prepare ourselves spiritually in this world which will be in existance for 6,000 years - then beginning in the 7th millenium of the Creation of the world, we will have the spiritual dainties prepared for us in the world to come which will be eternal. Thus, our sole purpose of our work and preparations are for the physical Shabbat (in this world), and the spiritual Shabbat (in the world to come).

With this in mind, if we have this right type of mindset, everything is worked up towards what really counts at the end, the same way as we make all types of preparations taking up many 10s of hours over the course of sometimes several months for a wedding that will last usually only for a few hours. As it says, B'chol Deracheich Da-eihu "In all your ways, know Him" (Proverbs 3:6), which the Rabbis interpret to mean that even when eating, sleeping, working, etc., we can use these activities to help our spiritual goals if we bear this in mind. And so even the mundane activities which have no end purpose to themselves become spiritually elevated if used for what we were put in this world for.

This is the ultimate prototype of Zevulun. It isn't that he is a mere accesory to the Torah scholar though the latter is certainly the one that Jews around the world may turn to when asking about matters in Jewish Law. He is in fact the one responsible for that Torah learning and teaching to others. To accentuate this point, both Jacob and Moses preceded their blessings for Zevulun over his older brother Yissaschar (and their descendants who followed in their respective paths), and in fact, Moshe mentions Zevulun's name twice while mentioning Yissaschar's name only once. Zevulun's raison d'etre for spending the bulk of his time working was to provide ample support for the Torah learning and teaching needed both for this greatest Mitzva of the Torah in itself, and ultimately to perpetuate the eternal legacy that Hashem bequeathed to us, which is made possible by having a proficient knowledge of Hashem's Mitzvot to fulfill them exactly the way He wants them to be fulfilled by knowing what the Halachot/Jewish Laws are, and for this, much time is needed to learn what they are. Otherwise, if everyone would need to work (if teaching would not provide sufficiently for a living) to make a living, how many would be left knowing all the Halachot, and would there be any Torah scholar to whom one could ask anything in Jewish Law in which he/she will have a question on in a moment's notice?

Perhaps it is not coincidence that we happen to know the birthdate of a great Torah scholar of some two hundred years ago who was the leading Poseik (decider of Jewish Law) in his time - Rabbi Moshe Sofer, commonly known as the Chasam Sofer, who was also born on 7 Tishrei (5523/1762). (It's interesting to note that both Moshe Rabbeinu and Rabbi Moshe Feinstein, the leading Poseik of the last generation, were both born on the 7th of Adar), which fell out on the 6th day of the week (also the day of the week - Friday - in which both Adam & Eve were created) which is also the case in this year. There is a story pertaining to his birth where his mother wanted the people of the town Shul to wait with their early Shabbat prayers until her son (the future Chasam Sofer) would be born. Apparently, it was shortly before sunset leading to Shabbat that he was born, signifying the fact that his birth (like his namesake Moshe Rabbeinu who brought immediate spiritual light with his birth) sanctified the end of the six day work week with the holiness of the concept of seven - 7th day of the 7th month, thus showing that we can turn even a mundane concept into something spiritual if we have the right intentions in mind, the same way that Zevulun who was also born on the 7th day of the 7th month did working for his brother Yissaschar, the scholar par excellence.

As Zevulun and the Chasam Sofer share the same birthday - I would like to point out to something that the Chasam Sofer wrote about the tribe of Zevulun as per the following week's Parshat Beracha (actually, in two weeks) which is the conclusion of the Torah that we read on Simchat Torah. He points out on the words S'mach Zevulun B'Tzeitecha - "Rejoice Zevulun in your going out", which he says refers to going out to war; meaning, that it is the merit of his supporting Torah study that will protect him and will serve as a Bitachon/trust or insurance that he will remain safe; unlike the other tribes as the following verse in the blessing for Zevulun that the "nations will call out at the mountain to sacrifice there", the nations to be interpreted as the other tribes who brought sacrifices before war, but was not such good insurance against casaulties except for the moment, unlike Zevulun's merit of the Torah study that he supported that served for him as a constant protection, as the Talmud in Tractate Sotah states that unlike other Mitzvot that protect a person only at the time that he/she is involved with them, Torah study protects a person even when not involved in it at the moment.


Along the notes of reward and punishment, Rabbi Nathan, the leading disciple of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, in his Likutei Halachot, a Chasidic commentary on the Shulchan Aruch/Code of Jewish Law, points out in relationship to Shabbat that while the 39 Melachot/categories of work that are forbidden on Shabbat stem from the curse given to Adam, if we observe Shabbat properly, then these 39 Melachot that are associated with the six days of work turn into 39 spiritual lights. As the punishment or curse of work, it is the number Lamed Teit, which is the root word for one of the meanings of the word curse (as seen in Aramaic). However, when inverted as Teit Lamed, it spells the word Tal/dew, which is Hashem's daily blessing to the world even when there is no rain, and hence, Tal Orot - the dew of lights.

The name of Lot, nephew of Abraham, is based on this word of curse, spelled Lamed, Vav, Teit. While he learned good manners and ethics from his uncle Abraham who used hospitality to bring other people to Hashem, he forsook Abraham's spiritual way of living to live a life of immorality and depravity among the evil residents of Sodom. Nevertheless, in reward for his good deeds in comparison with the rest of the town, angels rescued him along with his wife and two daughters who escaped the burning town for its punishment. Even at this, his wife who scalded him for his hospitality which he learned from Uncle Abe turned into a pillar of salt when she turned her face back to witness the punishment of the Sodom residents despite instructions to the family not to do so as they were not worthy of seeing other peoples' divine punishment. At this point, when Lot and daughters were in a refuge cave, and for all that the daughters knew, they were the only people alive on earth as Adam & Eve were at one point, they decided that they would have to continue the human legacy by sleeping with their own pop Lot, which resulted in the nations of Ammon & Moab. It's interesting to note that in fact, the names Adam & Lot have the same Gematria of 45, so these daughters actually had a point.


Speaking of nations, let's look at our Hebrew year 5770. The last letter of this Hebrew year - Ayin - equals 70. And as we are told in Rabbinic literature, there are 70 nations of the world. The list of these are in fact in Parshat Noach, who were descended from Noah's three children. However, Ammon & Moab are NOT among this list, and for that matter, neither are the nations of Esau or Ishmael (the Arabic race) are listed there. To come to think of it, the Midrash notes that before the Torah was given, Hashem went to all the nations of the world to give them a chance to receive the Torah. It is these very latter nations who are mentioned by name in the Midrash that the Midrash spends time talking about of Hashem's sales conversation with them about the Torah. So, when we see mentioned in this rabbinic literature of the 70 nations of the world against the Jewish nation, why do they say that are particularly 70 nations as opposed to the correct figure, or why is the cutoff count of nations in Parshat Noach and no further?

There is in fact a fundamental difference between the 70 nations, and the more recent nations of Ammon, Moab, Esau/Edom, Ishmael. This difference has to do with Abraham. You see, the 70 nations were already in existance before Abraham was born. Since then, Abraham had a spiritual influence on Lot, his nephew, though not in fact descended from him. Lot was though in a sense Abraham's spiritual son, though he turned astray and the end result was that his two daughters slept with him and two bombinos became two nations. Accordingly, Abraham's physical son Ishmael became the father of the Arabic race (along with several other sons that Abraham had in his old age, the ancestors of other nations), and his grandson Esau was the ancestor of the Edomites. And while in fact some of these latter nations became some of the Jewish nation's biggest enemies, including Amalek, whom Hashem ordered us to utterly destroy (which will be finally be accomplished in the Messianic era), there is hope that in fact, there will be room for some of the greatest spiritual accomplishments to come from them. As we see in the Talmud in Tractate Gittin, great Torah scholars who were Jewish converts descended from Haman, who in turn was a descendant of Amalek. But it can't be forgotten that ultimately, these Jewish converts were ultimately descended from Abraham, which means that even in the evil that may have descended from Abraham, ultimately it was this evil that lead to righteousness once again, even as Abraham's own father was the owner of an idol store who had his own son Abraham thrown into the furnace for defying his idols.

But the secret of these latter nations becoming nations of the status of the "70 nations" in fact has its roots. We see in the Torah that following Noah's wine intoxication that led to his son Ham preventing him from having further children, this story is immediately followed of the list of the 70 nations. Any immediate connection? The word Yayin/wine is the Gematria of 70! And wait!
What does Rashi have to say with the story of the daughers of Lot who intoxicated him with wine so they could sleep with him without his knowledge? "Wine was prepared for them in the cave (by Heavenly intervention) so two nations could descend from them". Wow! We see that in order that there should be additional nations, there had to be a concept of 70 that would allow this to happen to be spiritually included under this category of "70 nations", as opposed to the Jewish nation.

By the way, it's interesting to note that according to Halacha, one is disqualified from praying if he is drunk to the point of being with the "drunkeness of Lot", and it doesn't say the "drunkeness of Noah". Even the Halacha is here to teach us morality - not just what the strict Jewish law is. Noah was basically a very moral person, but let himself slip spiritually for once, also taking into account that he was depressed over the fact that the rest of mankind was swept away with the flood. However, Lot was already an immoral and depraved person, which resulted in him getting drunk to the point that allowed his daughters to sleep with him without any knowledge of this.

The Vilna Gaon (who passed away on the 5th day of Sukkot) points out that the 70 bulls that were sacrificed in the Temple which were divided between the seven days of Sukkot (13 the 1st day, 12 the 2nd day, etc.) which in fact corresponded to the 70 nations of the world which both symbolized an atonement for them and wishes of decreasing them as opposed to wanting to increase the Jewish nation, also hint particularly to the nations of Esau & Ishmael, and he correlates which days correspond to which one of these two nations to prove his point! Hence, we see that ALL the nations, even the ones who were not part of the original 70 nations, have a connection with them in one way or another, through use of the medium of the number 70, whether through wine, animal sacrifices, or whatever means that serves this purpose.

And thus, the Midrash points out to the specific examples of these other nations not listed among the original 70 nations when Hashem went around to ask if any of them wished to receive the Torah. These newer nations had connections with Abraham, and thus logically, there was a little better chance for these nations to be able to relate to the Torah. However, their base desires simply wouldn't allow them to make the committment needed to follow its dictates.


Now finally, let's get back to the title of this post - THE NINE. What is in fact special about the number nine? Even a simple Jew doesn't have to do much homework - it's right in the Haggadah - in the song Echod Mi Yodei'a. Tisha Mi Yodea - "Who knows nine?" Tisha Yarchei Leida "Nine are the months of pregnancy" Literally, Yarchei Leida actually means the months of birth. In fact, the regular word used for pregnancy in Hebrew is Heirayon. Now, while it is true that this poem was written in a poetic style to rhyme, it seems that perhaps there is a little more than just meets the eye if it is saying that this is nine "months of birth". But the birth process itself is only for, well, I never witnessed one, but to be on the safe side, I think it takes within one minute for this to happen. So, is there a message here?

I do want to point out that the square root of nine is three. The Talmud in Tractate Nidda points out that in fact there are three partners in the creation of a child - his/her parents and Hashem. The parents each provide through the genes/DNA part of the child's body makeup, and Hashem provides the ability for them to be used, like the seeing capability of the eyes, and the like. And the Talmud indeed brakes up the nine months of pregnancy into three parts of three months each as a different stage in the child's development.

As I said before about preparing for Shabbat or a wedding, or those preparations are in fact part of the Shabbat or wedding, even though the main and ultimate thing itself is the Shabbat or wedding, and our daily mundane activities which help us perform our spiritual activities also become spiritual. With this in mind, these months of pregnancy are in fact NINE MONTHS OF BIRTH. While according to Jewish Law, a child starts his years upon his/her actual birth, it is in these very months of pregnancy that the child learns the whole Torah (which an angel makes him forget at birth, but the Torah learning still has some sort of spiritual effect on the child) and the mother's focus of bearing a child puts her in a totally different frame of mind, eating more, etc., which helps the child develop to the point of being able to become independent of the womb.
Also, the Hebrew word for birth - Leida, is the Gematria of 49, which is 7 times 7, the number of days that the Jews had to prepare themselves spiritually to receive the Torah - the ultimate spiritual birth of the Jewish people - after the Exodus; and to this day, we count these 49 days annually for the same spiritual purpose.

And as I had mentioned earlier, the word Tisha, as mentioned in the Hagaddah text, has the same letters as the Hebrew number of this year. And similarly, when discussing fasting on Yom Kippur, the Torah mentions specifically the date of the NINTH of Tishrei, not the tenth, even though we fast on the tenth, as the NINTH of Tishrei is the PREPARATION day - including eating sufficiently - to be able to fast on the tenth of Tishrei, as it says "B'TISHA LaChodesh", bearing in mind this year's Hebrew number.

The Torah tells us: Sheishet Yamim Ta'aseh Ma'asecha - "For six days, you shall do your work" (Exodus 23:12). This is actually a command for us to work during the week, so first of all, we will be able to live sufficiently on our own; and also, to be amply prepared for what to eat on Shabbat. The word for "You shall do" is Ta'aseh. And yes, this word also has the same letters as the Hebrew number of this year. Very interestingly, the war of 1967 in Israel is called the war of "Sheishet Yamim". It was in the midst of this Six Day War that the liberation of the holiest area of the world took place, the celebration of Yom Yerushalayim, indeed a preparation for the ultimate Redemption.

Before conclusion, let's get back to the name of Adam for a moment. It's well known that its three letters Alef, Dalet, Mem begin the names Adam, David, Moshiach. When Hashem showed Adam the history of his descendants, and Adam saw King David's role in history with an allowance of only three hours to live, Adam granted King David 70 years from his original 1,000 years allowance to accomplish what he needed to, allowing King David in turn to be the ancestor of Moshiach.

In another sense, I believe that Adam's three letters also point out to three recent events in world history. As I had mentioned in the past, the very first word of the 24th and final book of the T'nach/Bible is Adam, beginning with a BIG Alef. If we divide the 6,000 of the world's alloted existance into 24 parts of 250 years each, we see that the year 5751 began the 24th and last such period. It was during this time that mass influxes of Jews, especially from Russia who were for the most part kept imprisoned from leaving its country for seven decades, immigrated to Israel, denoting the beginning stage of the Kibbutz Galuyot - Ingathering of the Exiles from the "four corners of the world". Next is the Dalet in Adam's name, as the beginning of King David's name. As I described in detail in my 43rd post, the fall of the Twin Towers began the process of the building of the Temple, also referred to as Sukkat David - "fallen Booth of David", the phrase mentioned in Amos 9:11. As to where else in the T'nach this pivotal point of history is hinted to as it relates to the End of Days, check out this link: And for the last letter of Adam's name which stands for Moshiach, the final preparatory stage of the exile right before the redemption is called Chevlei Moshiach, the birthpangs of Moshiach, a period of intense darkness, paralleling the NINTH plague of darkness of the 10 plagues that struck the Egyptians before the Exodus, and the NINTH day of Av (which corresponds to the letter Teit=9) - the darkest day of the Jewish calendar, marking the destruction of both Temples. And as I mentioned in my previous post, the 44th word of the Torah - V'La'Choshech - "for the darkness" corresponds to the current 44th President of the United States, who is hinted in the Hidden Codes in the Book of Ezekiel in the section about Gog U'Magog, as being the one to fulfill the role of Gog in this most dark time in history. This above information comes from

My friends, this is where we are at. We are now just about to face the FINAL PREPARATION STAGE for the Redemption which is very close at hand. We are in the midst of the FINAL WAR OF GOG U'MAGOG which is in fact spiritually fiercely fighting the rights to our holiest area in the world, which means attempting to have us go back to the PRE 1967 BORDERS, as Obama, 44th President of the United States has told Israel to do, which means GIVING BACK TO THE ARABS OUR HOLIEST AREA IN THE WORLD! THE NINE months of spiritual pregnancy is just about to come to a close. I had mentioned several weeks ago at the end of Blog #39 that as can be shown in the Hidden Codes, the Chevlei Moshiach - the Birthpangs of Moshiach, will be in Sukkot 5770, which is now just around the corner, at least the beginning of this most frightening stage, and unless Moshiach comes beforehand, we know that this is coming very close. PM Binyamin Netanyahu can double talk when he used to warn the world about Iran, and now calls it a weakling; and in Thursday's speech, make a nice show of his harsh talk about not messing with Israel. But I can assure you my friends, this is as far as he will go. Oh yes, he is playing as one of Hashem's puppets on string alright, though he has the free choice to do the right thing which he is spurning in his fear of what his constituents will say as opposed to what Hashem wants him to do, and he will eternally be in the dumps for how he had prevented Jewish construction following Obamastruction, leaving Jewish families in the dumps.

But I have a message for one and all. Rabbi Shimon Dahan, a well respected kabbalist in Israel, has warned of G-d forbid, an atomic/nuclear attack from Iran to be expected during this coming Sukkot. If for anything reason, things don't quite get as bad, it doesn't mean that Rabbi Dahan is a false prophet, because if something bad is prophesized and it doesn't happen, it means that Jews performed Teshuva/repentence, or it may be delayed depending on our future actions. But one thing is for certain - we must prepare ourselves spiritually NOW. NO more playing games. That's good for politicians. But the rest of us can live in a more realistic world, and money, power, etc. will mean nothing if G-d forbid, we are lucky if we can find a little food to eat or find a makeshift place for a bathroom if biological warfare make it impossible to venture outdoors, or if we are made to run and find basic supplies as the primitives do. In fact, there are even special Midrashim which I saw quoted ABOUT THIS VERY PERIOD which describes the very scenario that I just told you. And the question is, will we be worthy of surviving this period, even if it means for a short time living like an animal? It may not seem real now, but may Hashem spare us the worst and instead we should celebrate Sukkot with the greatest joy possible, hopefully with Moshiach coming, or if on his way, that our happiness of celebrating Hashem's Mitzvot should show Him that we are happy to serve Him which will be the final preparation needed for the ultimate good that will very shortly be revealed. So, along these lines, repenting our past misdeeds with a serious resolve to improve in the future, learning and/or supporting Torah study (includes wives who send their children to Yeshiva and encourage their husbands to learn Torah), keeping Shabbat by not working as detailed in the Code of Jewish Law - including eating the three Shabbat meals as the Talmud in Tractate Shabbat tells us, and treating others with kindness will ensure that Hashem will treat us with kindness in return with Hashem's help.

May Hashem seal us all for a good and sweet year with the immediate Redemption!

G-d willing, will post in the midst of next week before Sukkot, focusing on the Tribe of Levi.

7th day of the 7th month of Tishrei 5770 - Birthdays of Zevulun son of Jacob and the Chasam Sofer.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

#44 - Messages in REVERSE Wording

Am I talking about magic, or is this some type of hidden codes thing? Or maybe, I just like to put a catchy title?

I will explain shortly. But first, speaking of words or wording, today - 24 Elul - is the Yahrzeit of Rabbi Yisroel Meir Kagan, or more popularly known as the Chofetz Chaim, and just like when he passed away, it was on the first day of the week, on which begins the special pre-High Holiday prayers called Selichot - asking for Hashem's forgiveness - according to Ashkenazic rituals, so too does it fall out on the same day of the week this year. A prolific writer, he is known by this title because of his work that he named as such, which means "Who is the person WHO WANTS LIFE, loves days to see good. Guard your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceipt" (Psalms 34:13-14), so is this Sefer that the Chofetz Chaim wrote encompasses the laws about forbidden speech from various Talmudic and Halachic sources, all gathered into one book. Indeed, as he lived like he preached, he lived into his nineties, and his teeth were totally intact until his dying day.

Along these lines, and as this is my 44th post, I would like to point out to the 44th Parsha of the Torah - Parshat Devarim, which literally means words, as the Parsha, and the Book of Devarim/Deutronomy, begins with Eileh HaDevarim Asher Diber Moshe "These are the words that Moses spoke". As I had mentioned in an earlier post, the letters of the very first word "Eileh" are an acronym for Issur Lashon Hara - Prohibition of evil speech, which is usually in the context of saying something bad about another person. The next word is HaDevarim - the words. The word Devarim can spell two words - Riv/fighting & Dam/blood(shed). So it seems that the Torah is saying a hidden message here - "The prohibition of evil speech which can lead to fighting and bloodshed, is what Moses spoke about to the Children of Israel".

Now, guess how many times the word HaDevarim/the words (can also be translated as the things, depending sometimes on the context) is mentioned in the Chumash/Five Books of Moses? Did you guess it? It's exactly 44 times! Now, if this isn't enough about the number 44 as it relates to the word HaDevarim, there is one more time in the Torah that this word is spelled the same way, but it means something totally different. This ONE place in the ENTIRE Chumash is in the 44th verse of Parshat & Book of Devarim! "The Emorites...chased you as THE BEES do, and smote you..." (Deutronomy 1:44). Oh yes, it's not that it is just the 44th verse of the Parsha or book, it's VERSE 44 of the 1st chapter (though the arrangement of the number of chapters and verses was done by non-Jews, a topic about which I had wrote about in the past)!
And yes, this verse is about fighting and bloodshed, which happened to the Jews who disobeyed Moses who said not to attempt to travel to Israel, after he told them that their fate of dying in the desert and not going to Israel was sealed as a result of believing the evil speech that the spied reported about the land of Israel.

Now, the word Dam/blood(shed) itself is the Gematria of 44. The truth is that blood is the life force of mankind. But when blood is mentioned in a negative context, it means that the blood can be seen as a result of fighting or murder. However, when blood is used in the context of Mitzvot/commandments, it connotes a very positive aspect of it. Examples are the blood of circumcision and the blood of Korbanot/animal sacrifices. And as I had wrote in my 34th post, the evil - about which Pharaoh was referring to a star which is called Ra'ah, which literally means evil, was telling Moses at one point that he sees in astrology that this star will finish off the Jews. As it turned out, in the merit of the blood of circumcision that the Jews performed, the astrology of this star was changed, or reversed, from evil to good.

Speaking of something being reversed, there is something else to talk about in relationship to this concept, and another thing as it relates to the number 44 - of course, the 44th President of the United States - Barack Hussein Obama. Before I forget, the word after HaDevarim is Asher/which, which is the same Gematria as Obama's full name in Hebrew - 501! And for the first revelation about Obama which you may have never noticed before, the first four letters of his first name - Barack, spelled backwards is ARAB! So for those critics out there, assuming that they actually believe the fact that he is an Arab based on his father's side, they may very well write this off as "coincidence". Fine, but do remember that in Hebrew, the word for coincidence is Mikreh. However, when the letters of this word is rearranged - the letters Mem, Koof, Reish, Hei - they can be respelled as Rak M'Hei - ONLY FROM HEI - the letter Hei which is often spelled in Hebrew in short for Hashem (G-d) - ONLY FROM HASHEM.

Now, let's spell Hashem's name , which literally means "the name"- which is actually used in place of Hashem's real name which we are forbidden to pronounce (called the Tetragrammaton) and should not be spelled on a regular piece of paper that could be thrown away in the garbage - IN REVERSE. These letters - Hei, Shin, Mem - can be spelled backwards to spell the name Moshe/Moses! Well, it was Moshe after all who transmitted Hashem's Torah, which is the reason for the world's continued existance, to the Jewish people, "These are the words that Moshe spoke to the Children of Israel". These words introduce the fifth & final book of the Five Books of Moses, which in mostly in the narrative, though all the commandments were originally transmitted from Hashem to Moshe. And Moshe merited this special privilege because of his great character qualities, of which his special was his tremendous humility, emulating Hashem who also shows humility, so to speak, by providing sustenance to the most lowly creature, as an example.

Now, here comes something which some of you may have not known before about Obama, despite our great hatred for such an Anti-Semite who is a smooth talker, lying about his past, and marching his way right to the White House without hardly anyone telling him "boo" aside from the Republicans. What you virtually all most of heard of before is what is called "subliminal messages". We probably have heard of this in relationship to songs that rock singers have sung, and then some kid does something crazy or some crime, and then blames it on the lyrics of a particular song.

For anyone who may have been skeptical of these things before, it is now easy to check this out on the internet. Just go to or, and get your desired results. In the music industry, songs can be played backwards on a player that will especially do this. Now, you would think that it would just sound the words backwards, which for the most part should not make any sense. But indeed, as I heard with my own ears, you will hear at times FULL SENTENCES. They could indicate things of a sexual nature, a disturbing situation, or just a plain evil message. And it's in fact rare that it happens that if you spell the words backwards, it will spell an exact message. There is a percentage of this that has to do with the message, but a good percentage of this are words that aren't necessarily something that you could figure out if you read the sentence backwards.

But before getting into more details here, some songs have straight out evil connotations without playing anything backwards. For example, Chris Brown, who recently got convicted for beating up his girlfriend who is a famous singer herself, sang the song "Fallen Angel", refering to the Satan who is worshipped by many who feel sorry for this angel who was supposedly kicked out of Heaven by G-d Who "misunderstood Satan". Evil people like Chris Brown and the producers of these types of songs for the most part dominate the music industry. In fact, many who are in the music and other entertainment industries worship Satan as a means of becoming rich and famous, as one such person who was interviewed said "How do you think we make it out there?You can't get ahead unless you get your power from a higher force". I can believe this, because as we know from Kabbalah, evil people indeed receive their vitality from what is called the Sitra Achara "the other side", which sometimes does refer to the Satan himself. (And the first two letters in Hebrew of the word Sitra (side) is Samech Teit, the last two letters of the number of this Hebrew year 5769, as we are in the final week of this year).

Now, getting back to Obama, while he is no singer, he is a big talker. So, let's refer to a couple of things he has said, and what these words, when played backwards, reveal. Remember his arrogant statement, "Yes we can"? In fact, there was a group who put out a song promoting Obama, and as the song is being played, various people say "Yes we can". Now, whether is was Obama, or any one of these other evil people - and they are evil - who support a person representing the Democratic party which is pro-abortion and pro-gay rights, you will hear the exact same message, even though this reverse message will not very well parallel the message of "Yes we can". The subliminal reverse message: "THANK YOU SATAN!" And for his nominaton speech, he said at one point, and he repeated it "Let me express..." The subliminal reverse message: "WORSHIP SATAN!"

You see, the word Satan does not very well match the literal reverse of the first words in the original messages. But there is something in common here. You see, as I had mentioned in the past, the 44th word of the Torah - V'La"Choshech "And for the darkness", is the same Gematria as the word HaSatan "the Satan" - 364! And so, for the 44th President of the United States, the 44th word of the Torah fits perfectly well with him. Certainly, the ones who discovered the subliminal message of Satan coming from Obama's mouth would not know what the 44th Hebrew word in the Torah is, or know anything about Gematriot. And yes, I heard these messages myself.

Messages in reverse should not be of total surprise; this concept comes from the Torah itself. In my 41st post, I mentioned about reading the end of the Torah and then the beginning of it, pertaining to which, I wrote about the concept of blogs, which are in "REVERSE, chronological order". In my 42nd post, I mentioned the Midrash which narrates the letters of the Alef Beit
asking Hashem to start them as the first letter of the Torah, speaking to Him in reverse order of the Alef Beit beginning with Tav. And then in my 43rd post, I pointed out the connection of 9/11 - the 11th day of the 9th month - in the solar calendar in connection to the 9th day of the 11th month of the Jewish calendar. Also, I pointed out that Bush's family name when read backwards in Hebrew reads "RETURN"! So, it seems by Hashgacha Peratit/Divine Providence that I was preparing the reader to accept this concept of subliminal messages when heard backwards, especially as it pertains to ARAB - BARAck Hussein Obama.

So, there is probably one more question that some will have - but not by critics. "Yes, I believe in this, but how is this possible. Is this some kind of spiritual thing going on here?" Could be, but I believe there is a factor here that we don't always think about. Yes, it is about thinking. While thoughts may not seem to mean much, they are what control the person. Now, if these are evil thoughts, it doesn't necessarily mean that one will automatically follow what he is thinking about. He does have the free choice to chase them out of one's mind, thought this may be difficult at times. But allowing these thoughts to fester, they lead to the next step, the next speech, the next action. Our rabbis tells us that in a way, evil thoughts are even worse than evil actions, because these thoughts are what allow a person to sin. Indeed, one of the 613 Mitzvot/commandments, as we recite in the 3rd paragraph of the Shema, tells us "not to stray after your hearts and your eyes", referring to idolatry and sexual immorality, respectively. But also, it is intent that often determines whether an action that one takes is either good or evil, for example, killing someone. There are times that according to the Torah, one (Mr,. A) must kill another Jew (Mr. B) if need be even without a court previously trying him (Mr. B), because he (Mr. B) is chasing another person (Mr. C) to kill him (Mr. C), and there is no other way of stopping him (Mr. B). However, if he (Mr. A) is killing him (Mr. B) merely to take revenge on him (Mr. B), and could care less if the one (Mr. B) whom he (Mr. A) wants to kill is chasing someone else (C) to death, then indeed, for him (Mr. A) it is called murder.

And so, we are about to enter the New Year, and a new month called Tishrei. According to Kabbalah, the letters of this month are in reverse order for a reason - Tav, Shin, Reish. This tells us that just as Hashem gave us what we needed when we left Egypt during Passover, marking the birth of the Jewish people, so too do we reciprocate and show our good actions to Hashem, as now, we have already received the Torah on Shavuot, and so we are held accountable to a much higher standard, so we need to show our initial input in serving Hashem. And as reflected in some of the poetry included in our prayers, each phrase of the stanzas begin the Alef-Beit in the reverse order starting with Tav. In fact, it is particularly in the Mussaf Shemoneh Esrei prayer of Shabbat of the beginning of the middle blessing which focuses on the Sabbath, that it starts off with 22 words beginning with the Alef-Beit in reverse order. And just like Tishrei is the 7th month from Nissan which is the "head of the months" (Exodus 12:2), so is the Sabbath the 7th day of the week.

And as I conclude my 44th post, I want to let everyone know that TODAY, G-d willing, I will be attending the 2nd International Jewish Bloggers' Convention in Jerusalem at 44 King George Street. After all, after exposing the fraud of the 44th President of the United States, it only makes sense that the number 44 is showing up everywhere. I hope to let many more people at this convention know of this blogspot

This is my final post for the year 5769, of this blogspot that I began 11 months ago, but while starting this during Tishrei, the first month of the Jewish year. While writing blogs have been quite time consuming, keeping me up many nights, including this one when it is now day, especially as I will be in a rush later to be at the convention without panicking to finish my post at the last minute, the rewards are very spiritually rewarding. Playing a small part in transmitting Torah on the web has been well worth it to me. It is not only the small amount of followers, or those from Facebook who read my comments about this blogspot that read my writings - I have noticed through some research that other bloggers or websites are taking pieces of my blogs - whether about Bircat HaChama/Blessing of the Sun or the recent Hidden Codes of my prediction of Chevlei Moshiach/Birthpangs of the Messiah.

Wishing you all a Ketiva VaChatima Tova - to be inscribed for a good writeup and be sealed for a good and sweet year of 5770. Shana Tova - Have a good and happy New Year!

24 Elul 5769 - Yahrzeit of the Chofetz Chaim

NOTE: My next post will be, G-d willing, in the week following Rosh Hashana, about mankind.

P.S. Speaking of REVERSE, the number of the time posted 5:53 PM can be read in REVERSE as 355, which is the Gematria of the word Shana/Year, and this post is my final post of this year of 5769!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

#43 - The GOOD Side of 9/11

Imagine telling a New Yorker that since everything Hashem does is for the good, this means that 9/11 was a good thing. The next thing you know - if you are lucky - the guy will scream at you: "Some noirve (the word nerve in New York accent) you have saying such a thing!"

Now notice that I didn't write as the title "The good side of the EVENTS of 9/11". While it may be true that there is a hidden goodness in everything that happens in this world, it may not be evident to us, but Hashem has a purpose in everything that occurs. Certainly, everyone has free choice, and if free choice is employed the right way, then future people will be hurt by others only by accident. But as Hashem knows the future, though free choice isn't dependent on that, He plans things as such to accomplish certain things. Now of course, this may not be the message you will feel like telling a family member of a victim of the events of 9/11 or the Holocaust, but if someone takes an honest view of the events of that fateful day some eight years ago - there were people who were clearly meant to live, and somehow didn't quite make it to work on time as they usually did everyday. And then there were others who came to work just in time for them to perish in the midst of the results of a most henious crime, not knowing when they woke up to sunrise that morning that they would not see sunset that evening.

Among the three thousand plus people who perished, the majority of whom who died from the Twin Towers, the financial representation of the United States (besides Wall Street) were some who were Jews, and a few of whom were observant Jews. On the other hand, there are also many stories of people, including some observant Jews, who were delayed to work for every reason under the sky which normally didn't happen on any other day. It is also true that the horrific events happened during the week of the recital of Selichot - forgiveness prayers - recited also by Ashkenazic Jews specifically beginning that week right before the High Holidays, and so these extra prayers delayed many from coming to work at their usual time, and so lived to tell the tale.

One thing that Midrashic literature informs us is that Hashem sends the cure before the blow. This may only be evident far later than when the blow took place. Kabbalists have informed us that the events of 9/11 is a preparation for the coming of Moshiach. As we can see, the United States started its war some four weeks later on the night of Hoshana Raba - the very day that the Vilna Gaon says the war of Gog U'Magog - the final war before Moshiach comes - is supposed to start.

Now, for those who are not Jewish or not quite keen in other parts of the Torah - there is always the Bible to turn to. And today, I am refering to one specific verse in the T'nach/Bible that will show that the events of 9/11 were in fact a preparation for the future building of the upcoming third Beit HaMikdash/Holy Temple, which will last forever.

But first, let's turn to Amos 5:2 - "She has fallen and will no longer rise - virgin of Israel; she has been abandoned upon her soil, with no one to lift her up." It is based on the contents of this verse, that King David with Divine spirit when composing Psalm 145, the prayer known as Ashrei, in which each verse begins with another letter of the Alef-Beit, omitted a verse for the letter Noon - as the above verse in Amos begins with "Nafla Lo Soseif", and so he King David did not want to start a verse that could lead to such a connotation, and even at which began the verse with the following letter Samech - Someich Hashem L'Chol HaNoflim - "Hashem supports all the fallen" (see Talmud Berachot 4b).

Now, in the spirit of optimism, there are actually two ways of looking at this. The first is what the Talmud continues on saying that there is an alternate way of translating the above verse in Amos - "She has fallen, but will no longer; rise up, O virgin of Israel".

And now, here is THE GOOD SIDE OF 9/11 - Amos 9:11: "On that day, I will raise up the fallen booth of David; I will repair their breaches and raise up its ruins, and I will build it up as in days of old". Among the explanations of what the "fallen booth of David" is, is the royal house of David, and as we know, Moshiach is supposed to descend from the Davidic dynasty, and this can also refer to the Beit HaMikdash/Temple for which King David made preparations. Now in Hebrew, the beginning phrase is "Bayom Hahu Akim Et Sukkat David HaNoflet". This phrase may sound a little familiar. You see, near the end of the Bircat HaMazon/Grace after Meals, we say a one line phrase during the holiday of Sukkot - HaRachaman Hu Yakim Et Sukkat David HaNofelet - "May the Merciful One raise up the fallen booth of David", which is obviously based on this very verse of Amos 9:11.

In the midst of the Haftara - portion of the Prophets section of the T'nach read after the Torah reading - of the first day of Sukkot - there is a verse that we always say at the end of the prayer of Aleinu, the concluding prayer of our three daily prayer services "Hashem will king over all the world, ON THAT DAY, Hashem will be One and His name will be One" (Zechariah 14:9). This means that there will be no more idolatry in Messianic times, because then everyone will not only know the truth, but see the truth - and hence, no more Christianity, Islam, Buddism, etc. In any case, it is interesting that we found the same phrase "On that day", as we found in Amos 9:11, which includes the phrase "Sukkat David", and hence referring to the Temple as a Sukkah - the booth that we live in during the holiday of Sukkot. And as we know, we have seven Heavenly guests - Ushpizin in Aramaic - during this holiday, each of its seven days which represent a particular Heavenly guest; and the one for the last day of Sukkot - which is also called Hoshana Rabba - is King David. And as we mentioned, the beginning of the war of the United States following 9/11 took place on the night of Hoshana Rabba, when some Jews stay up all night learning, which includes reading the entire book of Psalms that was composed by King David.

There are in fact two consecutive verses which each include a date of the Jewish calendar, "On the 24th day of the 6th month (Elul)...of King Darius". "In the 7th month (Tishrei), on the 21st day of the month..." (Haggai 1:15-2:1). Now, this is a little strange, how come the first verse here is mentioned as a verse on its own without an event attached to it in the same verse, and also why is it mentioned only at the end of a prophecy instead of in the beginning like with other prophecies mentioned in the T'nach, including the second verse here?

In recent history, following 9/11 on that same evening, the 43rd President of the United States (and this is my 43rd post) - George Bush - spoke to the nation about fighting back for what just happened in the States, whose speech took place on the night of the 24th day of Elul. And his name in Hebrew - spelled with the Hebrew letters Gimel, Vav, Reish, Gimel, Beit, Vav, Shin has the same Gematria as King Darius's name - Daryavesh (520)! And the war of the United States began on the night of the 21st day of Tishrei (Hoshana Rabba) in Afghanistan, though back in the United States, it was daytime of the 20th of Tishrei when and where President Bush spoke to the nation once more announcing the beginning of the war. Now mind you, the events that the prophet Haggai prophesied about was the construction of the Second Temple, which was halted at one point by the Persian government, but was given the royal stamp of Hashem to continue without being given prior permission by the current government.

"Go up to the mountain and bring wood and build the Temple: I will be pleased with it and I will be honored - said Hashem" (Haggai 1:8). "The glory of this latter Temple will be greater than that of the first, said Hashem, Master of Legions; and I will grant peace to this place - the word of Hashem, Master of Legions" (Haggai 2:9). It's interesting to note that at end of some Chumashim, the number of Parshiyot/Torah portions, verses, words, and letters are mentioned with verses from the T'nach as a way to remember the particular number. So, to remember that there are 304,805 verses, these two verses of Haggai belonging to the context of the two dates of the prophecies, respectively are quoted. The first verse includes the Hebrew words Ertzeh Bo - "I will be pleased with it" with the Gematria of 304, and the second verse includes the words Gadol Yihyeh Kevod HaBayit Hazeh HaAcharon - "The glory of this latter Temple will be greater" with the Gematria of 805.

Now, here is a little twist of numbers here. These two numbers- 304 & 805 - are here to hint to the number of letters in the Torah - 304,805. But when you add these two numbers together, 304+805 - it adds up to 1109. You get it? The numbers of 9/11 with a zero - as in Ground Zero - in the middle! Moreover, the reverse date of the numbers in the Jewish calendar - which is the 9th day of the 11th month of the Jewish year beginning with Tishrei of Rosh Hashana - is the date of Tisha B'Av, the date of the DESTRUCTION OF TWO TEMPLES! And what caused this? When 10 of the spies whom Moses sent to check out the Land of Israel before the Jews were to enter the land came back with their evil report - it began with saying that it is a land flowing with milk and honey. BUT...and the rest is history. In Hebrew, unlike the usual word Ela for the word but; in this context, the word Efes, which also means ZERO, is used. Following this, the Jews cried their faces off, upon which, the Talmud tells us that Hashem replies, "You are crying on this night for nothing? I will give you a reason to cry in the future". And yes, my friends, this night was the night of Tisha B'Av. For that immediate generation of cry babies, for the remaining nearly 40 years lingering in the desert instead of making Aliyah, the ones who were in their 60th year dug up ground to be their graves on the night of Tisha B'Av, because they were to die as punishment for believing the evil report of the spies, dying before turning 60 years old, which meant that this was death at the hands of Heaven as a punishment. Interesting, the Hebrew letter for the number 60 is Samech, which is the most round number of the Alef Beit, and is spelled exactly as a ZERO when written as Hebrew script, and it was in their 60th year when Jews died every year on Tisha B'Av!

Perhaps this concept of adding two numbers within a number can be best illustrated as an Israeli guy told me. Some people think that when one tells a secret to one other person, it is just ONE plus ONE who knows this secret. But really, when you add ONE to ONE, it makes up the number 11-ELEVEN, and so it is really one person telling the secret to ten others, because that person to whom the secret was told will tell this to 9-NINE other people; and hence, it is a total of 11-ELEVEN people who now know the secret; and before long, it is no longer a secret. Mind you, this guy told this to me before the events of 9/11.

Anyways, getting back to our topic at hand pertaining to the verses used to remember the number of letters in the Torah/Chumash, the first includes the phrase Ertze Bo - and Bo in this context is spelled Beit,Vav. Now, when this word is spelled as a number, in Gematria, it is 2,006.
Now, while we obviously follow the Hebrew calendar in which we are in the year 5769, as I mentioned in my Gematriot blogpost early on, there are in fact hints in the Torah to the secular year. So, did something significant happen in 2006 of the secular calendar?

We'll get back to this question in a moment. But first, pertaining to the beginning of the construction of the Second Temple, the original permission granted for this is in the very last verse of the T'nach - "Thus said Cyrus king of Persia: Hashem, G-d of Heaven, has given to me all the kingdoms of the earth, and He has commanded me to build Him a Temple in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever there is among you of His entire people - may Hashem his G-d be with him, and let him go up" (II Chronicles 36:23). According to Jewish tradition, this announcment was made on the 16th of Adar. Now, the Hebrew name of King Cyrus - Koresh - is the same Gematria as George W. Bush - the middle initial which is Vav in Hebrew, adding up to the number 526! And within the war in the Middle East which began in response to the events of 9/11, on what date of the Jewish calendar did President Bush Jr.'s war with Saddam Hussein took place? On the 16th of Adar (2003)! Now, why the particular hint to Bush's middle initial in this phase of the war unlike the first part where his middle initial is not hinted to? Because as you remember, it was his father, President George Bush, Sr. without this particular initial who had war with Saddam Hussein back in 1991; and so to distinguish the two, it makes sense to hint to President Bush Jr. in this manner. And now, getting back to the year 2006, what happened? Saddam Hussein was hung on December 30, 2006, and was buried on the next day - the LAST day of 2006. This date was Asara B'Tevet, one of the fast days in the Jewish calendar which marks the siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian king who ordered the destruction of the Firt Temple. And if this was not enough, Saddam Hussein is believed to be a reincarnate of Nebuchadnezzar. Saddam Hussein ironically associated himself with Nebuchadnezzar, a pagan king, though he was the president of a country full of Moslems! Moreover, he named one of the four divisions of his army the Nebuchadnezzar division.

Now, on the second verse used to remember the amount of letters in the Torah, the first word is Gadol/Great(er), the Gematria of 43 (and this is my 43rd post), and as we know, George W. Bush was the 43rd President of the United States. In the context of this verse, this is referring to the construction of the Second Temple. There are commentaries who note that in fact, this verse hints to the construction of the Third Temple, which we are waiting for, which will never be destroyed again. So, what is special here about the number 43, and what does Bush have to do with all this?

We have to remember that the kings and presidents behaving the way they do are really only puppets being led by the string that Hashem is pulling. While people do have free choice, Hashem uses rulers to do things according to Hashem's plans. I am not here to explain why Hashem brings certain people to make decisions when they too are supposed to have free choice to do the right or wrong thing like anyone else. But one thing is clear - everything that happens in this world is because of Jews. Yes, the Anti-Semites indeed say the same thing. In a way, they are in fact right. But the difference here is that Anti-Semites are jealous of Jews, and want to view them as people who have power and take everyone else's money, to the extent that Neo-Nazi groups have accused Bush on fighting on behalf of Jews and Israel, as a scapegoat for the failing economy. But it is Hashem who makes the moves to bring us Jews to do the right thing and to prepare the world for the Messianic Era.

Four months ago, my 29th post focused on Yom Yerushalayim/Jerusalem Day which is 28 Iyar and falls out on the 43rd day of the Omer. In this particular year, we are in fact in the 43rd year since the events of the availability of access for Jews to the holiest area in the world where the Temples stood took place "The Temple Mount is in our Hands!". I made a connection between the Jerusalem Day-43rd day of the Omer to the timing of the week - the beginning of Shabbat night, as there are seven weeks to the Omer counting, and hence, the beginning of Shabbat - the 7th day of the week, corresponds to the 43rd day of the Omer. And at the beginning of Shabbat, we say a prayer that is recited ONLY at this time of the week, even though it does not mention a word about Shabbat. This is the conclusion of the Beracha/Blessing that we recite right before the Shemoneh Esrei "Spread over us the booth of Your PEACE -Sukkat Shlomeicha - Blessed are You Hashem, Who spreads the booth of PEACE - Sukkat Shalom - over us and over all His nation Israel and over JERUSALEM. " The reason for my emphasis on the word peace is as a verse from Haggai which I quoted here pertaining to the Second Temple states that "I will bring PEACE to this place". Indeed, it was on Jerusalem Day in 1967 in the midst of the Six Day War that this took place - at least as a preparation for the ultimate peace in Jerusalem when not only all the nations will visit, but will recognize this as the center of Jews' worship of Hashem, and the Arabs with the rest of the world will no longer dictate our ownership, rights and presence to the area of the Temple Mount.

Also in that previous post about Jerusalem Day, I had mentioned a whole list of things related to Jerusalem as per the number 43 - words beginning with this number. I had mentioned that Jerusalem in fact has 70 names. In the midst of this list, the 43rd name is Migdal Eider, "TOWER of the Flock". The first two letters of this phrase are Mem Gimel which is the number 43. What I did not mention in that previous post is that this phrase is mentioned twice in T'nach. The first time is when Jacob was traveling with his family and settled in a place called by this name, "...Migdal Eider. When Israel (Jacob) lived in that land... (Genesis 35:21-22) and then "You, Migdal Eider...they will come back to you; and the original kingdom will arrive, the kingdom of the daughter of Jerusalem (Micah 4:8). Indeed, it was on the 43rd day of the Omer that Jews, after no access to the holiest area in the world, was granted free access once again "they will come back to you". And among the times that the Torah uses the name Israel for Jacob, seemingly at random, this is one of the times that his name Israel particularly is used, as it is also the name of the LAND OF ISRAEL. It is a miracle that non-Jews of today are willing to call our land Israel rather than Palestine. After all, this name is the LAST word of the Torah, and accordingly, we Jews will have the LAST word shortly in the Messianic Era, when the Anti-Semites will no longer have what to say.

Very unfortunately, some people only focus on the middle third of the word Jerusalem - USA. Yes, too many people are caught up by the idolatries of today - money, movies, media, etc. (though not everything begins with the letter m), and forget what is the REAL MIDDLE or center of the universe - in terms of spirituality. When we get caught up in our fantasy world, we forget that in a moment's time, everything can change. It is hardly different from the Japanese who used the name USA on some of their products some decades back - you see, they have a city which is called Usa, and so it was an excuse to make it look like products they manufactured were American products, which would help better sell their products to Americans, while building up the financial stability of a nation who attacked the U.S.A. on December 7, 1941 - "a day which will live in infamy" following Japan's sneak attack on Americans at Pearl Harbor. And eight years ago on today's date of 9/11, happening on the 60th year of the first sneak attack on American soil, reality in the most affluent country in the world struck home. But unlike the United States who finished the war on Japan in 1945 with an atomic bomb, the United States today is still at war after eight years, which is largely if not mostly responsible for the declining economy not just in the States, but worldwide. And guess who is laughing? That's right - the Moslem Arabs. They know that while 19 of theirs took the plunge to kill a few thousand Americans, this was just the beginning of the expression of their hatred for the "Big Satan". The United States pouring astronomical billions of dollars into the war effort took its toll on the living conditions of the average American citizen - nay, even the American billionaires with their smart investments turning sour. And so who is really laughing all the way to the bank? That's right - the Moslem Arab oil owner billionaires, even as gas prices for the most part rose at an all time high.

And yes my friends, this war of the United States began on the last night of SUKKOT. Hashem is preparing the world for what really counts in life. Money is only a means to fulfill our spiritual needs, not an end to itself. But as the value of money is shrinking, so were special animal sacrifices offered in the Temple during Sukkot shrank - 70 young bulls symbolizing the 70 nations, as 13 were brought on the first day of Sukkot, 12 on the second, etc. until 7 were offered on the 7th and last day of Sukkot. And so correspondingly, there are 70 names to Jerusalem, where non-Jews who choose to believe in ONE G-d, as opposed to their concept of G-d in their man made religions, can find spirituality. As fortold in the prophecy of Zechariah that is read on the first day of Sukkot, on which 13 young bulls were offered as sacrifices, we read that "on that day" Hashem will be ONE, and his name will be ONE. One in Hebrew is Echad, which is the Gematria of 13. It's interesting to note that especially in the United States, the number 13 is considered tabboo to the extent that you will not find an elevator in that country that has a 13th floor. However for Jews, this is the very number representing the Torah, Hashem's attributes of mercy, and Hashem's oneness. And so Hashem relates to people the same way - it is in this month of Elul, the month of mercy, that Hashem struck the United States on 23 Elul, which in this year, 9/11 falls out on the nightime of this Jewish date, only one day earlier than it fell out on the Jewish calendar eight years ago on that fateful day, and Elul has the same Gematria as Zayin/Weapon (67), which is the word for the number SEVEN. And as I mentioned in my 23rd post, the time of the spring equinox, immediately preceding the timing of the equinox as per the position of the solar system over which the Bircat Hachama of once in 28 years is recited as mentioned by Abaye whose name is the Gematria of 23, the timing in the United States of the spring equinox fell out on 7:44 AM, of which 7 is the letter Zayin, the word for which means weapon, and 44 is the Gematria of Dam/blood(shed), the very first equinox of the 44th President of the United States, Moslem Arab Barack HUSSEIN Obama, who was voted into office just SEVEN years after the events of 9/11, and the media which is always known to be very picky in asking detailed questions, especially of politicans running for public office, REFUSED TO ASK HIM OF HIS THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS ON THE DAY THAT THE EVENTS OF 9/11 HAPPENED, thought of, planned by, and carried out by Moslem Arabs.

In terms of the 43rd President of the United States whose last name was Bush, in reverse, it can be read in Hebrew as Shuv (the Beit and Veit is the same letter shape, the dot in the Beit just indicates it to be read as a B, and without the dot, it is a V sound) - RETURN, as Hashem told Jacob: SHUV "Return to the land of your fathers, your birthplace, and I will be with you" (Genesis 31:3). Along the above lines about Sukkot, the last place Jacob was at before returning to Israel soil was in a place called Sukkot. Similarly, the Gog U'Magog war which began on the last night of Sukkot began the last phase of this exile right before the upcoming Redemption. Refer to the end of my 39th Post in relation to Sukkot and Chevlei Moshiach/Birthpangs of the Messiah, as hinted in the Hidden Codes of the Torah. Yes, we need to RETURN to Israel, RETURN to Jerusalem, RETURN to the ways of Hashem, RETURN to the reality that we should wake up to without being rudely awakened by a reality that we do not want to face.

And so the destruction of the TWO Migdalim - the Twin Towers - the Hebrew word which begins with Mem Gimel (43), which occured on the 11th day of the 9th month of the secular calendar which were reduced to GROUND Zero, should remind us of the Two Temples that were both destroyed on the 9th day of the 11th month of the Jewish calendar (though happening on two different times), in which the year begins from Rosh Hashana (usually, we count the months from Nissan, the month of Passover, but the New Year begins from Tishrei) which were the spiritual towers of the world, the GROUNDS of which were accessable once again after a 19 year break on the 43rd day of the Omer, which is now called Yom Yerushalayim, the phrase which ironically comes from Psalms 137:7, the content of this Psalm which is about the destruction of both Temples. Thus, Hashem is here to remind us of what the real Tower is about, and if G-d forbid we don't recall our spiritual standing from the remains of the Temple and yearn for its rebuilding, then Hashem has his ways of reminding us striking at very physical and financial objects that will remind us of the Temples that we lost as a result of our sins, and that we need to mend our ways if we want everything back the way it used to be. And as long as Hashem, so to speak, does not have a home - the Temple on earth; we should feel the same way, and not feel comfortable - especially in exile outside of Israel where it is far harder to relate to spirituality without the holiness of Israel and Jerusalem.

Isn't it interesting that some of the main prophecies of the End of Times are recorded in the Book of MINOR Prophets? The reason they are called "Minor" Prophets is simply because their prophecies were fewer than those of other prophets. But so too is the nation of Israel called the "smallest of all the nations". And as the Book of Minor prophets are in fact called Trei Asar/Twelve in Hebrew (technically, it is an Aramaic phrase), so too we are the 12 tribes of Israel. And with Hashem, we are Echad/One, the Gematria of 13, but we are the Chosen Ones of Hashem, though we may be few in number, to lead the way for the rest of the world. And at the end, we will all see how the FALLEN Twin Towers will have led to raising up "the FALLEN booth of David" - THE GOOD SIDE OF 9/11, predicted thousands of years ago in Amos 9:11. Amen!

Erev Shabbat of the 23rd of Elul 5769, marking the 8th Yahrzeit of the Jews who perished in the events of September 11, 2001.

NOTE: My next post will G-d willing be on Sunday, the last one for the year 5769, and will reveal some startling facts about the 44th President of the United States that you may have never heard or seen before!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

#42 - NEW Year Resolution

So what's new? Well, we will shortly be entering a NEW year - beginning with Rosh Hashana 5770. But that is not all so new, is it? Every year, we begin a new year.

Well today - 18 Elul - is the beginning of a new year, at least as far as Chasidim are concerned. You see, this date is the birthday of the famed Rabbi Yisroel Ba'al Shem Tov, founder of the Chasidic movement, who was born exactly 311 years ago - which was also on the second day of the week as it is this year. Along this note, the first letters of the words of his title - Ba'al Shem Tov - which literally means "Owner of a Good Name", the letters Beit, Shin, Teit - add up to to the Gematria of 311.

I would like to point out to a Jewish book named Sefer Ba'al Shem Tov, the most famous and extensive collection of his teachings compiled by Rabbi Shimon Menachem Mendel Shub of Gavartshov, first published in 1938, arranged according to the Parshiyot of the Torah, quoting from some 210 sources, basically books from the teachings of various Chasidic Rebbes. For more information on this, you can check this out on, where
you have the list of Parshiyot or holidays on which you can click, and you will instant access to the teachings of this book. For the home page of the website containing this information, with all kinds of information pertaining to the Ba'al Shem Tov, you can click over here

Though not everyone in the religious/Orthodox/frum world may subscribe to being a Chosid, follower of the Ba'al Shem Tov's Chasidic movement, represented by numerous sects of it who are headed by various Chasidic Rebbes, no doubt that the Chasidic movement has had much influence in the Jewish world. As a matter of fact, when it comes to Talmudic scholarship which seems to be more associated with the non Chasidic world, various accomplishments of Talmudic learning have in fact come from the Chasidic world. For example, Rabbi Meir Shapiro, a Chortkover Chosid, started the famous Daf Yomi, daily page learning of the Babylonian Talmud nearly 90 years ago. Rabbi Simcha Bunim Alter, one of the Gerrer Rebbes, started the Daf Yomi learning of the Jerusalem Talmud nearly 30 years ago. And Rabbi Yekutiel Yehuda Halberstam, one of the Sanz-Klausenberger Rebbes, started a Talmudic learning program providing a stipend to those who do well on tests of Talmudic learning, known as the Mifal HaShas program.

Anyways, this new year is a very special NEW year. You see, this is the beginning of the 312th year of the Ba'al Shem Tov's birth. So nu, what is the punchline? Yes, the word NEW in Hebrew is CHODOSH - Cheit, Dalet, Shin, and Chodosh is the Gematria of 312! So, this 312th year of the Ba'al Shem Tov's birth is a NEW year, and is a time for a NEW resolution, to do something NEW in being a better Jew, giving us 12 days of the end of the Jewish year of 12 months that begins from Rosh Hashana. And a Jew, among other names in Hebrew, is called Yisroel, the name of the Ba'al Shem Tov, and is also the last word of the Chumash - the Five Books of Moses. Also, the first letters of the words of the phrase Yisroel Ba'al Shem - Yud, Beit, Shin - add up to the Gematria of 312.

There is another word in Hebrew that is spelled with the same letters in the same order, but with different vowels - CHODESH/Month (NOTE: There are places where you will find this word with the letter Vav in the middle, but in the T'nach/Bible, it is never spelled with a Vav).
Indeed in English, we call the first day of a Jewish month - a New Month/Rosh Chodesh, the same way that we call Rosh Hashana - the New Year. In fact, the word Rosh does not mean new, though it may serve its purpose in English to let everyone know that it is a new time in the calendar - it means head. What this really means is that what we do on the head of the month, and especially on Rosh Hashana - the head of the year - sets the pace for the entire period of time. Though one can do good deeds on any day of the year - there are certain times that set the pace, making it much easier for the rest of the month or year. In any case, the fact that the word month in Hebrew is called Chodesh as related to Chodosh/new, does imply that the moon is reNEWed on the beginning of the lunar month, which reaches its max of human view on the middle of the month.

The Mitzva/Commandment of Kiddush HaChodesh/Sanctification of the New Month, which was performed in earlier times (until the establishment of the Jewish calendar some 1,650 years ago) by looking for the sight of the New Moon to declare a new month was first given over to Moses before the Exodus in time for Rosh Chodesh Nissan, which is the birthday of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, a great grandson of the Ba'al Shem Tov, who taught that each NEW try in serving Hashem, even if one failed thousands of times, is precious to Hashem.

And mentioning the Exodus, there was a great rabbi who was born nearly 500 years ago on the Seder night (first night of Passover) when we read about the story of the Exodus - Rabbi Yehuda Loewe, also known as the Maharal of Prague, the inventor of the Golem, and also wrote a commentary, in book form called Gevurot Hashem, on the Haggada, the Seder book. His mother, who screamed from labor pains right before his birth, prevented a blood libel of Jews from taking place. In short, a non-Jew who murdered a Christian boy to place him at the home of a Jew to make it look like the boy's blood was used for baking Matzos, got frightened from hearing this mother's screams, and instead of placing the murdered Christian boy at a Jew's home, kept running with the sack of this boy until caught by authorities, and the non-Jew was exposed for his crime instead of a blood massacre of Jews. Anyways, the Maharal of Prague passed away exactly 400 years ago - on 18 Elul. (Incidentally, Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi, founder of the Chabad/Lubavitch sect of the Chasidic movement, was the 8th generation by parental line from the Maharal of Prague, and was born on 18 Elul).

The time slot of 400 years rings a bell. In Genesis 15, Hashem tells Abraham that his descendants, the Jewish people, would be slaves "in a land not theirs" for 400 years. Rashi points out that indeed, it was exactly 400 years from Abraham's son Isaac's birth on the beginning of the future Passover holiday on 15 Nissan until the Exodus which occured on 15 Nissan. Though the Jews in fact were only slaves for the last 116 of these 400 years, since Abraham's first descendant was his son Isaac, with the knowledge that his descendants would be slaves, Hashem considered it as if the Jews served all their 400 years, as in fact was the original plan, but Hashem had mercy on His people due to the Egyptians' inflictions on the Jews far more than what Hashem intended for them. Sounds like criminals getting early release from their full prison term for good behavior.

Now, I want to point out to another set of 400. Well, it works like this. Based on the count of the Taryag Mitvot/613 Commandments of the Rambam/Maimonides who has strict guidelines of how he composed this list (unlike earlier ones who compiled such lists but without logical guidelines as he points out in his introduction to his list), the 21th Mitzva of the Torah is telling the story of the Exodus on Passover night. And the Mitzva of learning/teaching Torah is the 420th Mitzva of the Torah. Hence, the Mitzva of Torah is the 400th Mitzva from the Mitzva of telling the story of the Exodus which also includes the Mitzva of learning/teaching Torah, as the story of the Exodus is part of the Torah; in fact, the second book of the Torah which includes the story of the Exodus is indeed called in English by this very name.

And there is something else in common between these two Mitzvot. In the verses of the Aseret HaDibrot/Ten Commandments, there are exactly 620 letters. It has been pointed out that this corresponds to the 613 Mitzvot and the special seven Mitzvot of the Rabbis/Sheva Mitzvot D'Rabbanan. Now mind you, we are forbidden to add new Mitzvot to the Torah. However, the Rabbis have the power to institute things within Judaism to strengthen Hashem's Torah among the Jewish people. In particular, there are seven such institutions that have the status of being called Mitzvot. So with this being said, both the 21th Mitzva & the 420th Mitzva correspond to the same letter of the Alef-Beit - Sav/Tav, the last letter of the Alef Beit. To note about the Sav/Tav that corresponds to the 21th Mitzva of telling the story of the Exodus, it is located in the word Hotzeiteicha - Who brought you out (from the land of Egypt), thus directly relating to this very Mitzva!

In our previous post - the 41th post - I mentioned the concept of last being mentioned first, particularly on a blog website where the last piece of information is placed first. In reference to this, I mentioned that the word blog in Hebrew is the Gematria of 41, and the last Parsha of the Torah - V'Zot HaBeracha, which we read on Simchat Torah when we conclude the reading of the Torah scroll and begin it anew, has exactly 41 verses. In relationship to the letter Tav, the very first verse that is traditionally taught to a Jewish child is the verse: Torah Tziva Lanu Moshe Morasha Kehillat Yaakov - "The Torah that Moses commanded us is an inheritance of the congregation of Jacob". The first letter of the word Torah - and the first letter of this verse -BEGINS with a Tav - the LAST letter of the Alef-Beit.

Had plenty to mention in my previous post, but the concept of last coming first is actually a concept from the Torah from day one - in fact, 2,000 years before the Creation of the world. You see, the Midrash tells us that when Hashem was ready to write the Torah, the 22 letters of the Alef-Beit appeared before him. Each letter gave a reason why it should be the one to begin the Torah. In fact, the order of the letters speaking to Hashem was in the REVERSE - the letter Tav started speaking, and then the Shin, the Reish, etc. The Tav said that the Torah should begin with that letter because after all, it begins the word Torah. Makes sense. But Hashem told it that it would be the letter in the future that would mark punishment for evil people. Yes, the Tav serves a very vital purpose, but Hashem wanted to start the Torah with something positive. As it turns out, it was the letter Beit that began the Torah. Perhaps why the BIG Beit is that it can represent the Gematria of 2,000, as the Torah was written by Hashem 2,000 years before Creation. And the letter Alef, known as the silent letter as indeed it didn't speak up until Hashem spoke to it, was given the special honor of beginning the Ten Commandments, which corresponds to the 1st Mitzva of the Torah - Pru Urvu - having children who will continue the legacy of Torah in the next generation. And speaking of writing the Torah, the 613rd & very last Mitzva of the Torah - WRITING a Sefer Torah - is mentioned in this week's Parshiyot of Nitzvim-Vayeilech (it is mentioned particularly in Parshat Vayeilech).

Focusing on the Mitzva of learning/teaching Torah, the verse for this is V'Dibarta Bam - "You shall speak of them (words of Torah)". The word Bam - Beit, Mem - is the Gematria of 42 (and this is my 42nd post), and this is the 420th Mitzva, which means that 420 is 10 times the number 42. As I mentioned in my previous post, there are the 10 Commandments, 10 classifications of Jews - B'nei Yisrael, and 10 holinesses as related to Eretz Yisrael - the land of Israel. The last word of the Torah/Chumash - Yisrael - begins with a Yud=10, and thus the number 42, which represents Torah, when multiplied by 10, is 420, the number of the Mitzva of the list of the 613 Mitzvot. In fact, the Beit in Bam begins the Torah Shebichtav - The Written Torah or the Bible - Bereishit, and the Mem in Bam begins the Torah She'bi'al Peh/The Oral Torah - Mei'ei'matai. By the way, both the first word and last word of the Torah includes the letters that make up the word Rosh - Head, and today - 18 Elul - is the HEAD day of the 312th year of Rabbi YISROEL Ba'al Shem Tov who was born on this day. Another interesting spin on this number as it relates to the Ba'al Shem Tov is that the letters of the number 312 in Hebrew - Shin Yud Beit, when rearranged, spells the words Yisroel Ba'al Shem. Correspondingly, today is the HEAD day of the 401th year of the passing of the Maharal of Prague.

Thus, the number 401 in Hebrew is Tav, Alef. These are the LAST and FIRST letters of the Alef-Beit. Corresponding to this, on Simchat Torah, we read the LAST section of the Torah, and then begin the FIRST section of the Torah. This is the time when we begin a NEW beginning, starting from Bereishit - "In the beginning", and as we said earlier about the number 312, it is the Gematria of Chodosh/NEW.

Interestingly, the Ba'al Shem Tov, founder of the Chasidic movement, whose teachings are part of the Torah, passed away on Shavuot, the anniversary of Matan Torah, the Giving of the Torah which included the revelation of the Ten Commandments. On this day (6 Sivan - the first day of Shavuot outside of Israel, unlike in Israel where it is only one day of Shavuot), right before the reading of the Torah which is about the events of the day, we read a special poem called Akdamut, about the speciality of the Jewish people and the Torah. Each stanza ends with the letters Tav/Sav and Alef, the same letters that represent the concept of ending and beginning the Torah anew. And thus, while it is on Shavuot that we received the Torah, it is only on Simchat Torah when we celebrate the conclusion and beginning of the Torah, which is some four and a half months later when we can appreciate the Torah after learning it a while following the giving of the Torah on Shavuot.

Speaking of Shavuot, the Maharal passed away during the week of Parshat Ki Tavo, the 50th Parsha of the Torah - and the first verse of this Parsha contains exactly 50 letters - which in this year, is last week's Parsha. The word Tavo has the same letters as the word Avot/fathers, which is in fact the name of the Mishnaic Tractate that begins with the words Moshe Kibel Torah MiSinai - "Moses received the Torah from Sinai", which began on Shavuot, the 50th day of the count from after the Exodus. And in the verse that speaks of the Mitzva of Torah, as we recite in the first paragraph of the Shema which we recite twice daily, it contains exactly 50 letters. And in a similar verse that we recite in the second paragraph of the Shema, it contains 54 letters, and as we know, there are 54 Parshiyot of the Torah. And as I am writing this 42th post, there are exactly 42 words in the first and most important Beracha/blessing of the Shemoneh Esrei, the main prayer that we recite at least three times a day, which like the Mishnaic tractate is also called Avot. The 42nd and last word of this blessing is the word Avraham which is the Gematria of the word Bamidbar/Desert (248), which is the name of the fourth book of the Torah (known as Numbers in English), where it mentions the "desert of Sinai" in the first verse of this Book (Incidentally, this verse mentions MY birthday - the first day of "the second month" Iyar, and I was born in Mt. Sinai Hospital - you'll have to guess what city I was born in, I won't tell everything about myself here - sorry).

In the first verse of the reading of the Torah on Shavuot (Exodus 19:1), it says that "on this day" of the 3rd month (Sivan), the Jews came to the wilderness of Sinai. Rashi points out the normal wording of the Torah is "on THAT day". Why "on THIS day"? To tell you that the words of Torah should be NEW to you as though they were given as part of the Torah on the day that you are learning them. And per the last Mitzva of the Torah - writing a Sefer Torah - there is a concept of writing down Chidushei Torah - "NEW" Torah thoughts, which are in fact not so new in terms of being part of the Torah. But to the person who thought of these Torah thoughts or concepts, it is a new thing that he did not previously know or think of. And especially in terms of not forgetting what we learned, it is especially important to write down what new thing that we learned ourselves that we may not see in a Sefer/holy book, so it won't be forgotten or lost to others later on.

And it was on this note of writing Chidushei Torah - new Torah thoughts - that I began on the evening immediately following Simchat Torah when we end the Torah, and begin a NEW reading of the Torah. And as I had mentioned in my very first post, Rabbi Moshe Soloveichik points out that the celebration of the Torah on Simchat Torah is particularly about BEGINNING the Torah, rather than finishing the Torah. It is the fact that we don't just close the book when we are done with reading the contents. Reading and learning the same Torah text once again shows that we hope to gain some new insight in our Torah learning or service of Hashem. This can also be illustrated with a school graduation when there is always someone telling the students that the graduation ceremony is not merely the end of learning in school - it is the BEGINNING of a NEW future for them.

Yes - a new day which means a new Mitzva, a new piece of Torah learning, getting ourselves ready for the new year.

18 Elul 5769 - Yahrzeit of the Maharal of Prague & Birthday of the Ba'al Shem Tov

P.S. Towards the end of the week, G-d willing, I will be writing about the good side of 9/11.

NOTE: The number 222, as it shows the time of this posting 2:22 PM, rings a bell in my mind. My NEW year, my b-day, is Alef Iyar - the Gematria of 222, that is, the letter Alef which is 1 and Iyar which equals 221.